Scared for the morning

Friday, Monday, and Tuesday — what do those three days of work have in common for me? Well, let me fill you in on the mini-melodramas that I’ve had to survive before ever getting to work on those three days.

Let’s actually start on Thursday night. I was in the garage cleaning out the car when it struck me — the smell. I thought I smelled a dead animal. Newcomers to the blog might not realize what a big deal this is, so let me give you the recap. I’ve at this point trapped 3 live possums and have removed a dead possum, 2 dead squirrels, and a dead rabbit from my yard. If you want more details about my epic battle against the wildlife invading my yard, you can read about it here and here and…here. (You might want to skip the first link if you have a weak stomach.)

I tried to ignore the smell but it kept sneaking into my nostrils unbidden. I paced up and down the stupid walkway that’s been a sanctuary to the animals in my backyard, and I searched all around the massive pile of cinderblocks sitting in the garage. Unable to pinpoint the smell to a specific locale, I tried the next best strategy — denial.

Later that night though, I felt like the smell had gotten even stronger when I put the dog out at 11:30. I went out with a flashlight and tried to peer between the boards of the walkway, even contemplating tearing a few of them up to investigate. But the neighbor’s barking dog made me abandon those plans.

Friday Morning Melodrama

So, on Friday morning, I had to peel myself out of bed at 6:30 in the morning to tear up boards and figure out what was going on. I was leaving straight from school for a retreat, and I didn’t think the dog sitter would be pleased with my denial strategy if there was indeed a dead animal stinking up the backyard all weekend. Thirty boards later, I still hadn’t found the source of the smell. I even (and I hope the neighbors didn’t see this) got down on my hands and knees and sniffed between one section of the boards that I couldn’t pry up. I left for school, leaving behind a walkway that was missing boards every 2-3 feet and praying the dog didn’t fall into any of the gaps and break his leg.

Monday Morning Melodrama

Monday wasn’t too bad. My hair dryer just erupted in a sound like a gunshot followed by a horrific clattering and puffs of smoke coming out of it.

Tuesday Morning Melodrama

I picked my way across the torn up walkway, clutching my umbrella and mentally ticking off all the tasks I needed to accomplish at work. I threw open the garage door and was immediately assaulted by a horrific clattering sound. I wasn’t sure if a flock of birds was stuck in the garage  or whether a rabid squirrel was racing around. I didn’t stick around to find out. I took off running back down the walkway, yelling (not to my credit) a bad word. Then, a millisecond later I came to a screeching halt right before I fell into one of the holes in the walkway.

I turned around– heart beating wildly and mind racing. Are the neighbors surprised that I know words like that? When are the possums in the garage going to come out and attack me? How am I going to get to my car? Should I call someone at work to come pick me up?

I stood there  as far back as the gaps in the boards would let me go, and I did what any sensible girl would do. I started repeatedly locking the door of the car with my car remote to activate the horn. I was hoping that the creature in the garage would be just as terrified as I was and would make a run for it. No creature came out of the garage.

So, then I paced closer to the door and backed up, paced closer to the door and backed up, paced closer to the door and backed up. If the neighbors didn’t think I was crazy when I was sniffing the deck or rushing headlong for the gaps in the deck and yelling a profanity, the pacing was probably enough to convince them. Really, I was just trying to get up the nerve to reach right inside the door to hit the button to open the door. I reached my hand blindly around the corner and hit the button, running away again as fast as I could.

Still, no more movement from the garage.

So, I took off running. This time I ran through the garage, past the car, and straight out of the garage. From that vantage point, I was able to partially survey the entire garage. I didn’t see any creatures, but I did note that there was a curtain rod that had toppled out of the window onto the floor.

Still fearful that a creature could be hiding on the shelves or under the car, I unlocked the car door remotely and made a run for it, jumped in, and slammed the car door as quickly as I could behind me.

I still have absolutely no idea what was in the garage this morning. Maybe some wild animal made its escape at the same time I was running toward the gap in the deck or maybe that curtain rod just gave into gravity.

At any rate, I’m wondering if I should wake up early tomorrow just to build in time for the next drama.  I do need to leave time for my hair to dry since I still don’t have a hair dryer…

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